Research

Several of my works concern the nature of conscious unity, the relationship between the unity of consciousness and the identity of subjects of experiences, and the possibility of conscious disunity. My most recent major research project was the completion of a monograph on split-brain phenomenon, Self-consciousness and “Split” Brains: The Minds’ I, which is in production at Oxford University Press. The split-brain phenomenon has tantalized philosophers because, on the one hand, split-brain subjects behave under experimental conditions as if they had two conscious minds apiece, and, on the other hand, a split-brain subject nonetheless seems more or less like a single one of us at the end of the day. Philosophers have overwhelmingly assumed that one of these impressions must be mistaken—that where there is one person, in other words, there can be no more than one mind or thinker. Although this is surely right as a general rule, the book argues that split-brain subjects constitute principled exceptions to it: a split-brain subject is (composed of) two thinkers is one person, because these two thinkers do not recognize each other’s existence. (Research on the book has been supported in part by the Quinn Fellowship at the National Humanities Center during the academic year, 2014-2015.)

In addition to wrapping up a few offshoots from the book research I am presently working on one project on mindwandering and taxonomies of thought, one on the so-called "avowal view" of self-deception, and one on ADHD and executive functions. 

Papers

Forthcoming and in development

Self-deception and psychic economy

Mindwandering: Exploring psychological space and kinds

The folk psychology of multiple mindedness

Multiple identities: Memory, disunity, and self-conception

The unity of consciousness (for the Routledge Companion to Consciousness)

The split-brain phenomenon (for Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

 

Representative publications

Unity of consciousness. Subjects and objectivity. 

The switch model of split-brain consciousness.

Two unities of consciousness.